After playing just nine rounds over the first 10 months of 2022, Tiger Woods is prepared to nearly match that over the next month and a half. Woods announced Wednesday that he will play the self-hosted Hero World Challenge from Dec. 1-4 in the Bahamas.
Woods joins a field he recruited, which includes Scottie Scheffler, Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, Collin Morikawa, Viktor Hovland, Jordan Spieth, Hideki Matsuyama and Tom Kim. Most of the top 20 golfers in the world will be in attendance for this four-round event at Albany Golf Course, and while it is not considered an official PGA Tour event, the Hero World Challenge does receive Official World Golf Rankings points. (Tiger could use a few of those after missing so much time over the last two years.)
In addition to the Hero World Challenge, Tiger will tee it up on Dec. 10 at the seventh edition of The Match alongside Rory McIlroy. Those two will square off against Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas in a 12-hole exhibition at Pelican Golf Club in Belleair, Florida.
Additionally, Woods is expected to play alongside his son, Charlie, at the PNC Championship on Dec. 17-18. Though he has not officially committed to the PNC, this will likely be the third consecutive year he and Charlie would play in that event. If Woods commits to the PNC, we will see him play seven rounds over 18 days in December after he was on the course for just nine rounds over the first 334 days of 2022.
Woods finished 47th at the Masters then withdrew after the third round of the PGA Championship and missed the cut altogether at The Open in July.
Tiger has not played the Hero World Challenge since 2019 when he finished fourth, four back of winner Henrik Stenson. It is expected that he will ride in a cart for The Match and the PNC (if he plays), but it's unknown whether he will walk or ride in a cart for the Hero World Challenge.
While the immediacy of Woods' golf ambitions is encouraging for what his 2023 schedule will look like, don't expect him to show up at many more events beyond the major championships, if he even plays all four of those. It was at the Hero World Challenge last year that Tiger advised everyone to be conservative about projecting his playing schedule going forward.
"I don't foresee this leg ever being what it used to be, hence, I'll never have the back what it used to be, and clock's ticking," said Woods. "I'm getting older. I'm not getting any younger. All that combined means that a full schedule and a full practice schedule and the recovery that it would take to do that -- no, I don't have any desire to do that. But to ramp up for a few events a year ... as Mr. [Ben] Hogan did -- he did a pretty good job of it, and there's no reason that I can't do that and feel ready."
We'll see how many events is "a few events a year," but there's certainly reason for optimism with Woods filling up his December with golf.